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The Goldfinch Review: In the Age-Old Battle of Books vs. Movies, Books Win Again

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If you’ve read Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch, I am happy to report there’s zero need for you to sit through the remarkably tedious two-and-a-half-hour movie adaptation. If you haven’t read The Goldfinch, I am happy to report there’s zero need for you to sit through the remarkably tedious two-and-a-half-hour movie adaptation.

This brain-numbingly bland cinematic version of Tartt’s nearly 800-page Pulitzer-winning novel functions as a thesis statement on the wrongheadedness of turning novels into films without dismantling the story from its very foundation and rebuilding from scratch. (See also: Where’d You Go, Bernadette.) What worked relatively well in Tartt’s prose—the interiority, the wistfulness, and the numbed but palpable grief of the main character, Theo—is turned limp and lugubrious by director John Crowley’s literal staging of the book’s somewhat preposterous plotting. It’s paid no favors by director of photography Roger Deakins, whose established record of genius, it pains me to say, takes a major ding here; he delivers adequate amounts of texture and color, but not a single image that will linger in your brain. Screenwriter Peter Straughan deserves a big chunk of the blame, too—the airless, mannered way these characters talk to each other is nothing less than utter bullshit.


The airless, mannered way these characters talk to each other is nothing less than utter bullshit.

Article source:
https://www.portlandmercury.com/blogtown/2019/09/11/27122891/the-goldfinch-review-in-the-age-old-battle-of-books-vs-movies-books-win-again

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